Young Artist Competition

Each year the PSO recognizes an outstanding young artist residing within New Hampshire or the Seacoast region of Maine and Massachusetts (from Beverly to York). Open to high school orchestral instrumentalists including piano, guitar and saxophone, the Concerto Competition winner will perform their selection during the orchestra’s final concert of the season. 

To apply, print the Application and return with

  • Preliminary round video located online
  • Signed Application Form
  • Sealed letter of recommendation from current or most recent instructor (email from instructor is acceptable)
  • $25 non-refundable application fee made out to Portsmouth Symphony Orchestra (application fee can be waived; if in need please contact PSO)
  • Applicant must perform a single movement or equivalent (approximate guideline: 8-12 minutes) of a concerto with standard orchestra. The orchestral accompaniment must be available on IMSLP. Please email with questions about these requirements.

Postmarked or emailed no later than Friday, February 28, 2020, to:

Portsmouth Symphony Orchestra Att: Competition

PO Box 8391, Portsmouth, NH 03802

Final Round is Saturday, April 11, 2020 10am-12 at The Woods Campus, Riverwoods

Pictured is 2018-2019 winner Dacha Thurber on violin.


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It is with the greatest sadness that we announce the decision to suspend any concert activity for September, October, and November 2020.

We waited as long as we could, and had a number of scenarios in mind. It became clear, however, that the future, given the directives from the state of New Hampshire, was too much of an unknown, and we wouldn’t be able to plan compassionately, intelligently, and in a timely manner, for the safety and well-being of our musicians and audience members.

We know that all our lives have been turned upside down by this pandemic. This is the only time in 23 years that the Portsmouth Symphony has had to cancel concerts, which is illustrative of the gravity of the current global situation.

Please stay safe, stay in touch, and we hope for a quick and happy return to exciting concerts and to the exceptional joys of music-making that our community has come to expect and love.

We miss seeing you, our audience, and will keep you posted about when it is safe to return to glorious symphonic gatherings!

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